Tag Archives: Picasso

Special #005: Xavier Lucchesi

Photography without a lens? Xavier Lucchesi, 1959, France, uses X-rays and the most efficient scanners to create his bizarre images. He makes images while going through the matter of small and large objects, from animals, bodies, paintings of Picasso to entire trucks. Even though X-ray goes straight through matter it still shows various details of the objects, sometimes revealing secrets invisible to and hidden from the naked eye. Xavier shows us what we can only imagine but also creates a new reality, one that is based on solid objects becoming fantastical entities. His work has been exhibited on numerous occasions, mainly in Europe and Asia. The following images come from the series Radioportraits, Automates and Trafic.

Intrigued to see how he will approach his future projects and what they will reveal to us.
Website: www.x-lucchesi.com

Santa Fe Workshops

When I flew to Santa Fe on Tuesday to teach The Big Picture workshop, I didn’t know what to expect. I’d never taken a destination workshop, much less taught one for four days straight. Tonight, after the culmination of a delicious, yet intense week and several 14 hour days, I am humbled and renewed by the experience.

The Santa Fe Workshops are a well-oiled machine, but the people that keep it running so well are far from machine like. I encountered so much warmth and welcoming, an unusual level of appreciation for the faculty and students, and a program that allowed for learning, inspiration, good food, and new relationships. It was an atmosphere of joy and excitement and Director Reid Callahan sets the tone with grace and enthusiasm.
Last night, the 5 classes had their final presentations, and each teacher had to speak about their class, with a slide show to follow. I didn’t expect to get choked up, but I did, because I have made a group of new friends who I respect and admire, and truly look forward to their successes.

Sally deFord, Untitled

Santiago Vanegas, Antarctica #1823

Randy Karg, Self Portrait

Brandon Johnson, from Cowboy and the Angel

Yvette Meltzer, from Picasso’s Playground

Jay Ritter, Abstract #4

Alex Arzt, from Human Animal

Christa Blackwood, Hanukkah, France’s crib, wetplate

The Santa Fe Workshops

When I flew to Santa Fe on Tuesday to teach The Big Picture workshop, I didn’t know what to expect. I’d never taken a destination workshop, much less taught one for four days straight. After the culmination of a delicious, yet intense week and several 14 hour days, I am humbled and renewed by the experience.

The Santa Fe Workshops are a well-oiled machine, but the people who keep it running so beautifully are far from machine-like. I encountered so much warmth and welcoming, an unusual level of appreciation for the faculty and students, and a program that allowed for learning, inspiration, good food, and new relationships. It was an atmosphere of joy and excitement and Director Reid Callanan set the tone with grace and enthusiasm.

Last night, the 5 classes had their final presentations, and each teacher had to speak about their class, with a slide show to follow. I didn’t expect to get choked up, but I did, because I have made a group of new friends who I respect and admire. Thank you to all at the workshops for making my stay so special, huge thank yous to Brandon Johnson for all of his amazing assistance, and finally thank you to the wonderful photographers who came from all across the country to share in this experience. I look forward to all of their successes!

Sally deFord, Untitled

Santiago Vanegas, Antarctica #1823

Randy Karg, Self Portrait

Brandon Johnson, from Cowboy and the Angel

Yvette Meltzer, from Picasso’s Playground

Jay Ritter, Abstract #4

Alex Arzt, from Human Animal

Christa Blackwood, Hanukkah, France’s crib, wetplate

Special #005: Xavier Lucchesi

Photography without a lens? Xavier Lucchesi, 1959, France, uses X-rays and the most efficient scanners to create his bizarre images. He makes images while going through the matter of small and large objects, from animals, bodies, paintings of Picasso to entire trucks. Even though X-ray goes straight through matter it still shows various details of the objects, sometimes revealing secrets invisible to and hidden from the naked eye. Xavier shows us what we can only imagine but also creates a new reality, one that is based on solid objects becoming fantastical entities. His work has been exhibited on numerous occasions, mainly in Europe and Asia. The following images come from the series Radioportraits, Automates and Trafic.

Intrigued to see how he will approach his future projects and what they will reveal to us.
Website: www.x-lucchesi.com

Photographer #424: RES

Raúl Eduardo Stolkiner, better known as RES, 1957, Argentina, is a conceptual and fine-art photographer based in Buenos Aires. He studied photography at the Spilimbergo Art School and at Casa del Lago, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. His series Conatus was produced in collaboration with Constanza Piaggio. The photographs are recreations of iconic paintings by artists as da Vinci and Picasso. The images are not exact copies, RES made alterations to the original works that reinterpret and recontextualize the subject through contemporary perspectives on philosophy, politics and spirituality. One of his first bodies of work, Donde están e imanes, was the result of his return to Argentina after he had been exiled in 1978 to Mexico. His work has been shown in numerous exhibitions worldwide and has been published in a vast amount of publications. In the past nine years he also released his work in four different monographs. The following images come from the series Conatus, Plantas Vestidas and Donde están e imanes.


Website: www.resh.com.ar

Kiss the Past Hello by Larry Clark

The idea is to put all these fucking teenage boys in one place and just finish it there. just put the whole obsession with going back in one book and maybe it will be finished, maybe I can do something else. – Larry Clark interviewed by Mike Kelly

Larry Clark’s latest is a book titled Kiss the Past Hello which was published on the occasion of his show at the Musee d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris and it has one promising quality, if you missed out on Tulsa, Teenage Lust, Punk Picasso or the Los Angeles 2003-2006 Volume 1 then this would be a book to fill a gap on your shelf. If you have any of those aforementioned books then this will seem nothing more than a reshuffling of the same deck of cards. Seems putting the past away is much harder for Mr. Clark since he spoke to Kelly in the late 1980s.

No doubt Clark has produced a few great books over his lifetime and this is no small task as most suffer a sophomore slump and fade quickly. Clark obsession with youth and specifically boys comes from, in his words – a desire of wanting to “go back” and “be them” and not possess them – has remained the motivating factor in making new work in both still images, collage and films. An honest and sad confession that has made his work worth following.

As he shifted from the drug scene into describing narcissism the pictures became looser and less edited (reminding Kelly of action painting), the next logical step for Clark was to move into film. The difficulty is, with exception of his first film Kids, the way Clark approached film has sucked some of the spontaneity out of his process with contrived plot lines and action.

So in a way, Kiss the Past Hello is the return to his youthful, confessionary truth that he seems to partake in every few years but no matter how many times work can be recycled, the need to republish it in a book turns him into a franchise.

Kiss the Past Hello will be hard for fans of Clark to resist. It comes in a box, has a nice design, a poster and a supplement booklet with several essays and the interview with Kelly. The book is fairly cheaply printed and seems like it is the quality of on-demand production even though it was printed in Antwerp. It was produced in an edition of 2500.

If you haven’t had enough of kissing the past hello you will no doubt also hear about Clark’s Tulsa Reader 1971-2010 which is an ‘artist book’ of interviews, articles, press releases, gallery memos, letters to the editors – surrounding Larry Clark’s controversial photo series, Tulsa. coral calcium powder .

I thought at first this would be something worthwhile and it might be for someone, but the content looked much less interesting than it sounds. The presentation is a thick xerox book perfect bound (basic unsewn glue binding) with floppy materials. The ‘collage’ aspect that seems to be touting an artist book flavor seems a stretch but I guess that is cutting it too close to defining what an ‘artist book’ can be. Past or present this seems like shelf filler to me.

Kiss the Past Hello by Larry Clark

The idea is to put all these fucking teenage boys in one place and just finish it there. tri state area . just put the whole obsession with going back in one book and maybe it will be finished, maybe I can do something else. – Larry Clark interviewed by Mike Kelly

Larry Clark’s latest is a book titled Kiss the Past Hello which was published on the occasion of his show at the Musee d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris and it has one promising quality, if you missed out on Tulsa, Teenage Lust, Punk Picasso or the Los Angeles 2003-2006 Volume 1 then this would be a book to fill a gap on your shelf. If you have any of those aforementioned books then this will seem nothing more than a reshuffling of the same deck of cards. Seems putting the past away is much harder for Mr. Clark since he spoke to Kelly in the late 1980s.

No doubt Clark has produced a few great books over his lifetime and this is no small task as most suffer a sophomore slump and fade quickly. Clark obsession with youth and specifically boys comes from, in his words – a desire of wanting to “go back” and “be them” and not possess them – has remained the motivating factor in making new work in both still images, collage and films. An honest and sad confession that has made his work worth following.

As he shifted from the drug scene into describing narcissism the pictures became looser and less edited (reminding Kelly of action painting), the next logical step for Clark was to move into film. The difficulty is, with exception of his first film Kids, the way Clark approached film has sucked some of the spontaneity out of his process with contrived plot lines and action.

So in a way, Kiss the Past Hello is the return to his youthful, confessionary truth that he seems to partake in every few years but no matter how many times work can be recycled, the need to republish it in a book turns him into a franchise.

Kiss the Past Hello will be hard for fans of Clark to resist. It comes in a box, has a nice design, a poster and a supplement booklet with several essays and the interview with Kelly. The book is fairly cheaply printed and seems like it is the quality of on-demand production even though it was printed in Antwerp. It was produced in an edition of 2500.

If you haven’t had enough of kissing the past hello you will no doubt also hear about Clark’s Tulsa Reader 1971-2010 which is an ‘artist book’ of interviews, articles, press releases, gallery memos, letters to the editors – surrounding Larry Clark’s controversial photo series, Tulsa.

I thought at first this would be something worthwhile and it might be for someone, but the content looked much less interesting than it sounds. The presentation is a thick xerox book perfect bound (basic unsewn glue binding) with floppy materials. The ‘collage’ aspect that seems to be touting an artist book flavor seems a stretch but I guess that is cutting it too close to defining what an ‘artist book’ can be. Past or present this seems like shelf filler to me.

Review: Ballet by Alexey Brodovitch (Errata Edition)

Errata_Brodovitch_cover.jpg

The history of the photobook is filled with many absolutely amazing examples, many of which remain only known to experts – or those fortunate enough to have the means to acquire them. The main reason for this is mundane: It’s not because some elitists pick books and decide they are great. It’s because most of those books were printed once and then sold over the course of a few years. To make matters worse, there’s the Velvet-Underground effect: Many of those books didn’t even sell well, while inspiring what ultimately became a real movement. In fact, some books are so hard to get because they sold just a few copies, and the rest were then literally destroyed. The case of Alexey Brodovitch’s Ballet is particularly heart-wrenching: According to the main essay in this reprint, the original print run was five hundred copies, which were not sold through any major bookstores. In 1956, a fire at the artist’s farmhouse destroyed the majority of the negatives, along with most of his library, plus a collection of signed lithographs by Picasso and Matisse. There was another fire, in the next home, too. (more)

Alexey Brodovitch of course is widely known for his long work as an art director for Harper’s Bazaar from 1938 to 1958. But he also published a photobook entitled Ballet in 1945. The book, now available as part of Errata Editions, is nothing but astounding. With a background in ballet productions, Brodovitch had taken “souvenir” photographs between 1935 and 1937 of ballet companies visiting New York. The use of a 35mm Contax camera, available light, plus the relatively slow film at the time could have been considered a serious obstacle. But Brodovitch wanted to capture ballet the way he saw and felt it. And that included taking some of the often blurry and/or underexposed negatives and cropping small parts even further or messing with them in the darkroom. Only a few of those negatives – then on loan by someone else – survived the fires at his homes.

In the book, Brodovitch made the images transcend their sources. Presented full bleed, often heavily manipulated (in addition to cropping there are various other things he did), the photographs were transformed into the most amazing experience, an expression of ballet itself. The images jump and move and dance in ways that must have been revolutionary in 1945 and that still are (or maybe I should say are again) revolutionary today. Photobooks these days often are made by photographers, with maybe a little bit of input by a designer. Ballet, in contrast, clearly was made by a visual artist who knew everything about design, and who wasn’t so concerned about the sacredness of a photograph. If it needed to be cropped, then it was cropped. If the grain needed to be brought out even more, that it was brought out. If the spread required a photo to be flipped, it was flipped. Brodovitch was after the effect, and the result is stunningly successful (and I don’t even care about ballet!).

The success of the book is based on the fact that everything was done for a purpose, with a clear intent in mind. Each of the design or photography related decisions was made so that the final result would work best. That is, of course, how you want to produce a photobook, and Ballet might just be a perfect example of photobook making that is, well, simply timeless.

Alexey Brodovitch: Ballet, photography by Alexey Brodovitch, essays by Edwin Denby, Kerry William Purcell, Jeffrey Ladd, 142 pages, Errata Editions, 2011

Spreads from the book kindly provided by Errata Editions – thank you!